(October 8, 2014) – RedRover, a California-based nonprofit organization, is deploying volunteers to arrive this week to provide emergency animal sheltering assistance for an estimated 136 dogs and puppies rescued from neglectful and unsanitary conditions on a private property in Jackson County, West Virginia.

RedRover was asked to assist the Jackson County Animal Shelter to safely shelter and provide daily care to the 136 rescued dogs and puppies that were seized last week.

All the dogs were removed from a single property in Sandyville, West Virginia. According to WOWK-TV, a Charleston news agency,

Deputies said they were tipped off when a man went to purchase a dog from the couple living inside of the home.  He saw the conditions of the home, and posted a Facebook video of the horrible conditions inside. He reported the situation to the Humane Society of Jackson County, deputies said.  As a result, the Sheriff’s Department and the Animal Shelter went to investigate Wednesday afternoon.

When they arrived, they said they found 141 dogs living in filth. The dogs were eating moldy dog food and drinking water from bowls covered with bugs. The majority of the dogs living in the home were injured or sick. “Eye problems that hadn’t been treated, very long nails, mats on their rear ends full of feces.  Some of the dogs couldn’t defecate appropriately because it was all covered up” says Brianna Idleman, a veterinarian with Ripley Paws. 

135 of the 141 dogs were taken from the home in Sandyville and transported to the Jackson County Animals Shelter. Police said several of the dogs were left behind because they belonged to someone else in the home.

RedRover Responders volunteers are traveling from surrounding states and parts of West Virginia to care for the rescued animals at the temporary shelter. RedRover Emergency Services Manager Beth Gammie is onsite providing sheltering management assistance. RedRover has nearly 3,000 active volunteers in the United States and Canada and provides its services free of charge to the community.

Distinguished by their red shirts, RedRover Responders volunteers are specially trained to care for and shelter large numbers of animals after they have been rescued from cruelty and neglect. RedRover Responders volunteers provide the workforce which enables local animal control and law enforcement agencies to respond to large-scale animal cruelty cases.

“RedRover’s volunteer team is recognized nationally for its ability to give neglected and abused animals loving human contact, often for the first time in their lives,” said RedRover President and CEO Nicole Forsyth. “RedRover’s free emergency sheltering services support local agencies that otherwise might not be able to respond to such large animal cruelty cases due to lack of resources and staff.”

All of the animals are currently being housed at the shelter location where they will be examined by veterinarians and receive any necessary immediate medical care. According to Jackson County officials, the case is still considered a criminal investigation and the animals are not available for adoption at this time. RedRover Responders volunteers, along with the Jackson County Animal Shelter and other local volunteers will care for the animals until they are made available for adoption.

RedRover works to end puppy mills by educating the public about what life is like inside a puppy mill through their “Opt to Adopt” campaign. Learn more about RedRover’s work to care for dogs rescued from puppy mills and prevent future animal suffering at RedRover.org/puppymills.

Donate to the Emergency Response Fund


About RedRover
Founded in 1987, the mission of RedRover is to bring animals out of crisis and strengthen the bond between people and animals through emergency sheltering, disaster relief services, financial assistance and education. Learn more at RedRover.org.


Media contact
Danielle Gates
Communications Coordinator
916.429.2457 ext. 316